Let the radio station building begin! How you can help make more radio.

Now that we have passed the Local Community Radio Act, we are looking ahead to the largest expansion in the number of community radio stations in US history. Let the fun begin! We are ramping up our organization and convening a coalition to help get these new radio station licenses in the hands of groups wanting to start local, participatory stations.

So you want to start a station …

The best community radio stations are participatory, engaged locally, and serve their communities with a clear mission. They are led by a coalition of groups, strong leaders within the community, and have a dedicated group of volunteers. Even though you can't apply for a new radio station until the FCC takes applications, which may be a year away, there are many things you can do in the meantime to organize your community and plan your station.

We strongly suggest holding a meeting to begin mapping out a plan for community involvement. What communities in your area lack a voice in local media? What issues are underrepresented? Who are the people and organizations you want to engage? By finding out what kind of radio will be relevant to those you'd like to serve, you can start building listeners even before you build your station.

Since the FCC hasn't yet released the new rules for the low power FM (LPFM) service, it's too early to begin picking a location or to know what channels are available in your community. We do know that these license will be available only to non-commercial entities, including non-profit organizations, schools, churches, emergency responders, and local governments. If you aren't associated with a non-profit organization, look for organizations locally that might make good partners.

If you have any other questions about how to start a station, fill out the "Want to start a radio station?" form here: /want_to_start_a_station. Once the form is completed, we will add you to our list for updates and news.

So you want to help grow community radio in your region …

We are seeking volunteers who can help support outreach to groups in your area. If you are with a media justice organization, an existing radio station, a local non-profit or grassroots group, or you're an interested, engineer, radio lover, or media activist just wanting to help out, let us know by emailing jrousset@prometheusradio.org. We will add you to our list of outreach supporters.

Here's what to expect in the coming months:

  • We will send outreach materials to spread the word about this new opportunity around your community.
  • If you are organizing an educational event, send us the announcement and we will send it to the groups on our list in your area.
  • We will be convening conference calls of our outreach partners to share updates and strategies.
  • Come to the National Conference for Media Reform in Boston April 8-10, 2011. Organized by our allies at Free Press, this is the biggest media reform conference in the country. We will be connecting with outreach supporters there and celebrating our victory with the Local Community Radio Act!
  • Join us at the Allied Media Conference in Detroit June 17-20, 2011. This dynamic, movement-building event will include a track of workshops on radio and will offer another fantastic opportunity to network and plan for the next generation of community radio.    
  • We are finalizing our outreach plans -- including tours and events throughout the country -- sign up to stay in touch with us as plans unfold!